When I was making the 2016 Holidays and Observances page, which I will post tomorrow, I noticed something that doesn’t happen very often. Although Easter (Resurrection Day) almost always coincides with the Feast of Firstfruits during Passover week (as it should), next year this is not the case.
In 2016, Easter is Sun., Mar. 27, but the Feast of Firstfruits (during Passover week) is four weeks later on Sun., Apr. 24. This discrepancy has not happened since 2008, when Easter was Sun., Mar. 23, and the Feast of Firstfruits was four weeks later on Sun., Apr. 20.
Typically, Easter is the first Sunday following the first full moon after the Spring Equinox (Mar. 21). If there is a full moon on that Sunday, then Easter is the following Sunday. This is an example of Christianity’s breaking away from the foundational Calendar of Hebraic Feast and Holy Days. Obviously, Jesus rose from the dead during Passover week, not several weeks before that. More details about all of this can be found in this article, written by someone who wrote and emailed it to me:
In any case, if my church has a Passover Seder next year on “Good Friday” (Mar. 25), I will not be attending. I also probably will not attend church on “Easter Sunday” (Mar. 27) because it will be the incorrect timing of Resurrection Day.
Another thing I noticed when making the 2016 Holidays and Observances page is that Hanukkah in 2016 begins at sunset on Dec. 24. That is, the first full day of Hanukkah is on Christmas day, Dec. 25.
Christmas is not Jesus’ birthday. Rather, Dec. 25 is when the birthday of the pagan Sun god, Sol, was observed. Christians adopted Dec. 25 as the “birthday” of Jesus during the time of the Roman Emperor Constantine, who chose to blend Christian and pagan traditions. So, like Easter, Christmas has pagan roots.
Interestingly, the first full day day of Hanukkah, the Festival of Lights, is the 25th day of the Hebraic month of Kislev. Most likely, this is when Jesus, the Light of the world, was conceived by the Holy Spirit, and nine months later He was born at the beginning of the Feast of Tabernacles = Sukkot. Thus, this is when God came to “tabernacle” with us in human form.
So next year on December 25, which also will be Kislev 25, it may be that God will be pointing Christians to Jesus’ conception rather than to His birth. Of course, in a sense, a conception is a birthday because it is the beginning of a human life in the womb.
For those of you who fly often, it might be a good idea to be aware of something. In some U.S. states, beginning at various times in 2016, a driver’s license may not be adequate identification to board a flight, even for domestic flights.
The notion of the Rapture is an eschatological belief in many Christian denominations. The Pre-tribulation view of the Rapture is the belief that the Rapture will take place prior to the opening of the seven seals described in the book of Revelation (beginning with Revelation 6:1).
Although I agree that there will be a Rapture event, I disagree with the Pre-tribulation view. One aspect of this view is that Christian believers will be supernaturally removed from the world before they experience great hardship, distress and persecution.
On the contrary, I feel it is quite possible that when these things happen to them—which I believe that they will—many who have embraced this view may experience apostasy, which is a falling away from their faith. More details about this can be read in these three email responses I have written:
I didn’t go quite as nuts buying 50% off Christmas candy today as I did buying Halloween candy on Nov. 1. I didn’t need to, since I still have a lot of leftover Halloween candy. Today’s batch is 103.7 ounces, which is 6.58 pounds.
Merry Christmas to those who celebrate this holiday. Click on the Christmas card below to go to the animated and interactive version. While there, you and your kids can help the animals build their snowman.
I think it is interesting that there is a full moon on Christmas this year. That has not happened since 1977, and it will not happen again until 2034.
The moon will be totally full at 3:11 a.m. PST = 6:11 a.m. EST. So there will be plenty of light for Santa Claus to see where he is going as he flies through the skies.
I celebrate the birth of Jesus during the week of the Feast of Tabernacles or Sukkot. See my Sep. 28 entry for more about this.
Regardless of when the virgin birth of Jesus took place, He is the promised Messiah, the Son of God, and the Savior of those who acknowledge that they are sinners and ask God’s forgiveness for their transgressions, understanding that Jesus came and took the penalty that we were due. You can view My Beliefs and Faith to see more of what I believe.
He was born in Bethlehem as a human for one primary reason: to die for the sins of the world. So Jesus lived His earthly life knowing that, one day, He would undergo the worst torment and affliction that any human ever would have to endure.
When the time came, Jesus’ humanity and flesh had a brief moment of weakness. He asked the Father if He would be willing to take His cup from Jesus. Essentially, what Jesus was asking was if the Father’s “cup” of wrath against sin, which Jesus would have to “drink,” could be taken away and if atonement for the world’s sins could be made some other way.
Yet, in the next moment, Jesus’ diety spoke. This aspect of Him was in agreement with the Father’s will:
In St. Peter’s Square at the Vatican today, Pope Francis told a large crowd of people that this Christmas might be the last one for humanity. He indicated that all the present chaos in the world is the beginning of the end times and that the world may be unrecognizable a year from now.
For instance, on Dec. 11, a teacher in Virginia gave a calligraphy homework assignment to her students. They were to copy the Shahada, which is the Islamic statement of faith in Arabic. (The Shahada is on the flag of Saudi Arabia.) Translated to English, it means, “There is no god but Allah. Muhammad is the messenger of Allah.”
Evidently, the teacher was unaware of the significance of the Shahada, and the students were told neither to translate it nor to recite it. Nevertheless, it is important to note that the recitation of the Shahada is a fundamental step in the conversion to Islam.
I do not write to you because you do not know the truth, but because you do know it and because no lie comes from the truth. Who is the liar? It is the man who denies that Jesus is the Christ. Such a man is the antichrist—he denies the Father and the Son. No one who denies the Son has the Father; whoever acknowledges the Son has the Father also. (1 John 2:21-23)
Dear friends, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world. This is how you can recognize the Spirit of God: Every spirit that acknowledges that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God, but every spirit that does not acknowledge Jesus is not from God. This is the spirit of the antichrist, which you have heard is coming and even now is already in the world. (1 John 4:1-3)
When the U.S. president was running for office, his main platform was the “fundamental transformation of America." Unfortunately, he has been successful in accomplishing this, and there may be no turning back. You can click on it to see a larger view.
This is the last night of Hanukkah, which began at sunset on on Dec. 6. All nine candles were lit, and the Hanukkah blessings were read.
I also reread the passage describing the rededication of the altar, within the newly consecrated temple, in 1 Maccabees 4:36-59. The final verse shows why the eight-day Feast of Dedication has been observed ever since then:
Then Judas and his brothers and all the assembly of Israel determined that every year at that season the days of dedication of the altar should be observed with gladness and joy for eight days, beginning with the twenty-fifth day of the month of Chislev. (1 Maccabees 4:59)
On American Family Radio (AFR) this morning, Pastors Tom Wallace and Shahram Hadian of Fortress of Faith discussed the terrorist attack in San Bernardino, CA, 1½ week ago. They talked about how the attackers were true Muslims acting according to the dictates of Islam, following the clear teachings of the Qur’an and the example of their prophet, Muhammad. The shooters also had pledged their allegiance to ISIS.
Wallace and Hadian discussed President Obama’s recent speech from the Oval Office pertaining to the attack. They feel that the president’s administration is protecting Islam, giving comfort to Islam, and giving cover for the Islamists. Their claim is that these and other factors qualify as treason.
Recently, a good friend went on a safari in South Africa. He sent me the following postcard, which I think is hilarious. Click on it if you want to see a larger image. My favorite ingredient is “1 bay leaf.”
In his speech from the Oval Office last night, President Obama said, “ISIL does not speak for Islam.” Yet, both radical Muslims and moderate Muslims claim that their interpretations of the Qur´an are foundationally and fundamentally sound.
The two expressions, “radical Islam” and “moderate Islam,” seemed to be coined by those who think that the real Islam is the moderate one, but the radicals hijacked it. Dr. Mordechai Kedar, senior lecturer in the Department of Arabic at Bar-Ilan University in Ramat Gan, Israel, has written an informative article about this topic.
This evening is the first night of Hanukkah, which will last for eight nights/days. Hanukkah also is known as the Festival of Lights or the Feast of Dedication. More can be read in my Dec. 1, 2010 entry.
Hanukkah Blessings are read each of the eight nights of Hanukkah. The third blessing is read only on the first night.
The original events leading to Hanukkah can be read in 1 Maccabees 4:6-59. Basically, Israel was delivered from its enemies in 165 B.C. In Jerusalem, Judas Maccabeus and his Jewish men tore down the defiled altar, built a new altar, rebuilt the sanctuary and the interior of the temple, and consecrated the courts. Then they lighted the lamps on the menorah (lampstand) on the eve of Chislev 25.
Early in the morning, they presented sacrifices and offerings. They also dedicated the altar and the sanctuary, which is why Hanukkah is called the “Feast of Dedication.” They celebrated the dedication for eight days, during which the oil in the menorah was said to have continued burning miraculously, without being refilled, for the entire duration. This celebration continues today during the eight days of Hanukkah or Chanukah.
Another brief description of Hanukkah is included about a quarter of the way down the following page (after the Passover section): How to Teach Students About Holidays & History. The page also contains brief explanations of other holidays and celebrations that are observed in the United States.
Being Jewish, Jesus observed the Feast of Dedication (Hanukkah). It was during this feast that Jesus encountered some who challenged His claim of deity:
Then came the Feast of Dedication at Jerusalem. It was winter, and Jesus was in the temple area walking in Solomon’s Colonnade. The Jews gathered around him, saying, “How long will you keep us in suspense? If you are the Christ, tell us plainly.”
Jesus answered, “I did tell you, but you do not believe. The miracles I do in my Father’s name speak for me, but you do not believe because you are not my sheep. My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me. I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; no one can snatch them out of my hand. My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all; no one can snatch them out of my Father’s hand. I and the Father are one.”
Again the Jews picked up stones to stone him, but Jesus said to them, “I have shown you many great miracles from the Father. For which of these do you stone me?”
“We are not stoning you for any of these,” replied the Jews, “but for blasphemy, because you, a mere man, claim to be God.” (John 10:22-33)
When people cannot argue the facts, they resort to emotion and name-calling. They want those who are speaking the truth to shut up and to be more “tolerant” of their views or lifestyle, as harmful and destructive as they may be.
U.S. officials said today that Tashfeen Malik, one of the shooters in the Dec. 2 terror attack in San Bernardino, CA, made a Facebook post as the attack was underway. In the post, she expressed allegiance to ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi.
It also has been revealed that Malik’s husband and co-terrorist attacker, Syed Farook, had a heated debate with Nicholas Thalasinos two weeks before the San Bernardino attack. Thalasinos had tried to convince Farook that Islam is not a peaceful religion.
Thalasinos was a Messianic Jew (believer in Yeshua/Jesus) and a co-worker of Farook. He also was one of Farook’s shooting victims.
Farook and Malik did not shoot dozens of people at a public event because they were poor and unhappy or because they were upset about climate change. They did it because they were radical Islamic jihadists.
Information still is being gathered about the tragic and heinous shootings at the Inland Regional Center in San Bernardino, CA, yesterday. In the attack, 14 were killed and 21 were injured. It was the deadliest U.S. mass-shooting since Sandy Hook in December 2012.
The attackers, Syed Rizwan Farook (28) and Tashfeen Malik (27), left their 6-month-old daughter with Farook’s mother earlier that morning, telling her they had a doctor’s appointment. Dressed in body armor and wearing GoPro cameras, the killers shot up a conference room where Farook’s employer, the county health department, was hosting a holiday party.
The shooting rampage was over in minutes. Then the couple escaped in a black SUV, which had been rented only a few days before. They were killed by police in a fierce gun battle, about three hours later, less than two miles away from the attack location.
A neighbor said she noticed that the couple had received quite a few packages recently. They also had been spending a great deal of time working in their garage at night.
Police and other law enforcement officials found thousands of rounds of ammunition, twelve pipe bombs, and plenty of other material to build numerous other weapons in the townhouse and/or in its garage. Also, they found explosives strapped to remote-controlled cars, which is a hallmark of Al Qaeda. They described the place as an “IED facility.” Obviously, this attack had been planned for awhile, and they very likely were planning other attacks.
Syed Farook was born in Illinois and moved with his family to Southern California. Tashfeen Malik was a Pakistani citizen who was here on a K-1 (finacé) visa. They both were devout Muslims.
Family members, friends, and co-workers of Syed Farook have said they knew him only as a friendly, quiet, polite guy. They are totally surprised at his violent activity yesterday.
Farook’s father told the New York Daily News that Syed was very religious. “He would go to work, come back, go to pray, come back,” he said.
All of this shows that even the most “peaceful” Muslims can be radicalized. Without a doubt, more attacks like this by radical Islam will continue to take place in the USA and in other Western nations.
There continue to be 31 state governors opposing the influx of Syrian refugees into their states. Yet, on Nov. 25, the Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR) of the Obama Administration sent out a notification affirming that states may not deny ORR-funded benefits and services to Syrian refugees.
It commonly is believed that jihadist terrorists are radical Islamists and follow an errant teaching of Islam. Yet, in The Noble Qur´an, the foundational holy book of Islam, all Muslims are instructed to “strike terror into the hearts of unbelievers” (âl-`Imrân:151).
Striking terror into the hearts of non-Muslims is exactly what Muhammad taught and did. Muhammad is the highest authority within Islam and is the example Muslims are to follow.
Every fundamental Muslim is instructed by the Qur´an to follow and mimic Muhammad, just as every fundamental Christian is instructed by the Bible to mimic Jesus. One major difference, though, is that Jesus taught Christians not to kill those who do not believe as they do but, instead, to love them. See more here:
Our first president, George Washington, issued a General Thanksgiving Proclamation. Its focus is on the Almighty God, to whom we all should be thankful for both good and happy times, as well as bad and sad times.
In his instructions to the Thessalonians, the apostle Paul wrote the following:
Now we ask you, brothers, to respect those who work hard among you, who are over you in the Lord and who admonish you. Hold them in the highest regard in love because of their work. Live in peace with each other. And we urge you, brothers, warn those who are idle, encourage the timid, help the weak, be patient with everyone. Make sure that nobody pays back wrong for wrong, but always try to be kind to each other and to everyone else. Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus. Do not put out the Spirit's fire; do not treat prophecies with contempt. Test everything. Hold on to the good. Avoid every kind of evil. May God himself, the God of peace, sanctify you through and through. May your whole spirit, soul and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. The one who calls you is faithful and he will do it. (1 Thessalonians 5:12-24)
On this special day, the prominent phrase that Paul wrote is, “give thanks in all circumstances.” For many who are going through difficult and trying circumstances, this is not easy to do. Spiritual maturity enables us to understand that we should give thanks even for the thorny and challenging things in life.
It is hard for us to understand why we should be thankful for the terrible things that happen to us, and to others close to us, along this journey of life. We must realize, though, that we cannot understand the infinite Mind of God, nor can we comprehend His plans and purposes for our lives. It is in obedience and in faith that we thank God for all things.
Today, let us remember that God is in charge and in control of all situations. He allows us to go through hard times to strengthen us and to cause us to depend on Him—rather than on ourselves or other people—even more. It is one of the greatest lessons we can learn before Jesus returns to rule and reign, when He will wipe away every tear from our eyes.
Vladimir Putin was not at all pleased with the downing of one of his planes. Russia has dispatched a warship to the eastern Mediterranean Sea. It has an advanced S-400 air defense system. It could threaten Turkish F 16s attempting to intercept Russian bombers near the Turkey-Syria border.
President Obama wants to bring in 10,000 Syrian refugees in fiscal year 2016 and 100,000 in fiscal year 2017. Videos show that the vast majority of Syrian refugees entering European countries are young, military-aged men.
It seems more likely than not that ISIS is placing its radical soldiers among these groups. At least one of the terrorists in Paris came in with the refugees. The notes and audio recording of today’s program are here:
In other news, in Iran, plastic replicas of the Dome of the Rock and the al-Aksa Mosque were constructed. Then thousands of Basij soldiers staged a mock seige of the Temple Mount in Iran dubbed “Towards the Holy City.”
Syria’s war: Who is fighting and why? According to Vox News, after four-plus years of fighting, Syria’s war has killed at least 250,000 people and displaced 12 million people.
Though it started as a civil war, it’s become much more than that. It’s a proxy war that has divided much of the Middle East, and has drawn in both Russia and the United States. To understand how Syria got to this place, it helps to start at the beginning and watch it unfold.
You may want to turn up your volume for this video, which is about 5½ minutes in length. Some of the words of the narrator are difficult to understand because he does not annunciate too clearly.
There are more details that the video does not include, but it is a good starting point. Without a doubt, what is going on in Syria and Iraq is a complex mess. It is like a multi-dimensional game of chess. No doubt it will become much more complicated as time goes forward, especially when radical Islamic factions begin attacking Israel.
One night a few weeks ago, the movie The Drop Box was shown at church. This movie is an award-winning documentary about the work of Pastor Lee Jong-rak, in South Korea, and his heroic efforts to embrace and protect his community’s most vulnerable children.
Many girls and young women, who have had babies out of wedlock, choose not to keep their babies. Pastor Lee Jong-rak has installed a “drop box,” next to one wall of his house, where these new mothers can secretly discard their babies and walk away. The pastor and his wife then provide a safe haven to these babies, who otherwise would be abandoned on the streets to die.
Today on the 700 Club program, Brian Ivie, the director of this movie, was featured. His description of how his life was transformed by going to South Korea to make this movie is amazing.
Brian thought he was a Christian, but making this movie actually transformed him into one. I like these profound statements that he made: “Jesus Christ became you on the cross so that you could become Him. Jesus became my story, He became me throughout my life, so that I could live a new life.”
If you would like to watch the 7-minute segment where Brian Ivie gives his very interesting testimony, do the following:
Click on the video to start it.
Place your arrow on the timeline near the bottom of the video.
Move your arrow back and forth until you see a time that is a bit less than 25:25 minutes. You can use the timeline that I have placed below the video as a guide.
Click the timeline at that point and watch the 7-minute segment from 25:25 to 32:35.
To hear Pat Robertson’s comments and prayer afterwards, continue to 35:10.
In the aftermath of the vicious and ferocious Islamic terrorist attacks on Paris three days ago, President Obama spoke and answered questions today for almost 50 minutes. This was at the G20 Summit in Antalya, Turkey. He defended his present strategy for opposing and resisting ISIL/ISIS.
A number of international journalists posed tough questions to Mr. Obama. He apparently became increasingly irritated with the questions. He seemed to feel that they were variations of the same question and that he already had answered them.
The president reaffirmed his strategy of airstrikes in Syria but reiterated that ground troops would be a “mistake.” I was very unimpressed with President Obama’s speech today. I also am dubious of his nominal strategy against ISIS/ISIL in Syria and in Iraq. In my opinion, the most powerful man in the world appeared very weak and feeble.
In his closing remarks, Mr. Obama proceeded to make a case for bringing Syrian refugees into the United States. He indicated that we should “not start equating the issue of refugees with the issue of terrorism.”
Yet, several European nations have reported massive and colossal problems with the refugees who have entered their countries over the past few months. Furthermore, there are numerous difficulties involved in selectively attempting to screen out the troublemakers in groups of refugees. For instance, on Nov. 14, I noted how one of the Islamic terrorist attackers in Paris had a Syrian passport.
Moreover, Mr. Obama said he plans to allow 10,000 Syrian refugees into the USA over the next year. I highly doubt that the number will be that low. I feel that his reasoning to do this is reckless, and I am extremely wary of it.
In the U.S., several states have announced that they will refuse the entry of Syrian refugees. They fear that some of the refugees could have terrorist motives. No doubt the number of states in this boat will increase.
I have little doubt that welcoming tens of thousands of Syrian and Iraqi refugees into a country will compromise the safety of the inhabitants of that country. There is no way to properly vet every refugee who enters, and it takes only a handful to perform a devastating attack, as in Paris on Nov. 13 or in America on Sep. 11, 2001.
Members of the Islamic State in Syria and Iraq can and should be defeated and eradicated, by international ground troop forces. Then there would be less of a need for innocent people in those locations to flee to other countries for safety. Of course, nations who attack ISIS can expect internal attacks by ISIS sympathizers.
Barack Obama does not want to place American troops on the ground in Syria and Iraq. He feels that his present policy is sufficient. I wonder if he has seen this video, released today, sent out by a branch of ISIS in Kirkuk, Iraq, threatening to attack Washington, DC, as well as European countries:
It is a myth that ISIS and other radical Muslims primarily hate the West for our way of life, or because Muslims are imprisoned at GITMO, or because cartoons of Muhammad are drawn, or for anything else that they find offensive. They hate the West, including moderate Muslims who live there, because we do not believe as they do.
Furthermore, they have perpetrated barbaric acts against those that they consider “infidels” (unbelievers) for about 1,400 years. They will not stop until they are defeated or until they are able to take over the world and implement a worldwide caliphate. Most likely, the latter is what will happen, probably sooner than most people can imagine.
Following the horrific terror attacks in Paris yesterday, the passport of one of the attackers was found. It was a Syrian passport and shows that the man entered Leros, Greece, as a refugee on Oct. 3, 2015. Two days later, he left Greece and eventually ended up in France.
These were the worst attacks on France since World War II. President François Hollande of France said, “It is an act of war that was waged by a terrorist army, a jihadist army, by Daesh, against France.” He is right.
Today, the second day of the Arabic month of Satar, ISIS released a response to yesterday’s attacks. Click on the following statements, in Arabic and in the translation to English, to read it:
At the end of the statement, ISIS says, “Indeed, this is just the beginning. It also is a warning for any who wish to take heed.” I have no doubt that they mean it. Any nations—including the USA—that welcome Islamic refugees from the Middle East will be in greater danger of suffering terrorist attacks on their soil in the future.
Today is Friday the 13th. It is the third one this year, including the ones in February and March.
Fear of the number 13 is known as triskaidekaphobia. Fear of spooky dates is paraskevidekatriaphobia. I have neither, but I think that the possible origin of superstition on Friday the 13th is interesting.
It may be that it originates from the Last Supper, where there were 13 attendees: Jesus and the 12 disciples. One of the disciples was Judas, who betrayed Jesus and resulted in His going to the cross.
Furthermore, tradition has it that the Last Supper and Jesus’ crucifixion took place on a Friday. Thus, “bad luck” would be associated with Friday the 13th.
Of course, I am convinced that the Last Supper and the crucifixion of Jesus took place on Good Thursday, not on Good Friday. However, I don’t anticipate that Thursday the 13th will replace Friday the 13th as a superstitious day of bad luck.
Incidentally, there was only one “Thursday the 13th” this year. That was on Aug. 13. On that date, I wrote about the coming “Godzilla El Niño,” which seemingly will bring very “bad luck” to many during this Fall and Winter.
According to some climatologists, Californians can expect one rainstorm after another from December through March. Essentially, it will be a “conveyor belt” of storms, resulting in lots of mudslides. Yikes!
In other news, speaking of “bad luck” on Friday the 13th, there has been a series of horrendous terror attacks in Paris tonight. The attacks began about 9:30 p.m. local time.
There are at least 129 dead and 352 wounded. About 100 hostages were taken at a concert hall. Several were shot, and live grenades were tossed into the faces of others.
This is just a little over 10 months since the radical Islamic carnage in Paris on Jan. 7. The following early post was written while the attacks were taking place, so it reports a low death count:
Numerous shouts of Allahu Akbar (“Allah is great”) have been heard by attackers in various places. One man who was arrested says that he is from Syria. He said that he was there with two others, and they were recruited by ISIS to perform these attacks.
One of the attackers at the concert hall was killed by police, while the others were wearing explosive vests and blew themselves up. The hostage situation there was brought to an end.
The French borders have been closed until further notice. A lockdown and curfew have been issued in Paris as police search for the attackers and tend to victims. There has not been a curfew in Paris since 1944, during WWII.
I feel that these Islamic terror attacks can be expected to escalate in various places, globally, over the next year and beyond. Radical Islam’s ultimate goal is a worldwide caliphate, and it will stop at virtually nothing to attain that. Nations that take in Islamic refugees from Syria are asking for major trouble.
President Obama and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu are meeting at the White House. They have not met together for over a year.
Tensions over the U.S.-backed nuclear deal with Iran a few months ago continue to strain ties between the long-time allies. There also is little hope of progress on other matters.
One might think that an Israel/Palestinian peace process would be a major point of discussion. However, Mr. Obama has ruled out the possibility of successful peace negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians during the remainder of his term in office, as mentioned in my Nov. 6 entry.
President Obama officially announced his rejection of the Keystone XL Pipeline today. I disagree with that decision. Even Justin Trudeau, the new liberal prime minister of Canada, has said that he is “disappointed by the decision.”
Furthermore, Mr. Obama has concluded that there will be no peace agreement between Israel and the Palestinians before he leaves office. Although this is a very pessimistic view, I actually agree with it. This also is in advance of a visit by Israel's Prime Minister Netanyahu next week.
A new, shocking video has been released by the group Deport Racism. The group’s founder, Luke Montgomery, is behind this very controversial video, in which kids lash out in profanity-laced tirades against Donald Trump.
This is not the first video in which this man has exploited children to speak filty language to support his causes. Certainly, he has the right of free speech; but using innocent mouths to project this speech is horrendous and appalling. He evidently has no conscience and should be ashamed of himself for doing so.
I will not link to the video because it is too despicable and disgusting. However, here is a link to information about Luke Montgomery, and on that page is a link to the “Trashing Trump” video, in case you wish to view it:
At this point, I neither support nor reject Donald Trump in his bid for the presidency. However, I would reject this video even if it were made to bash my least favorite presidential candidate.
As for the guy who made the video, we share the same last name. If we happen to be related, I do not care to find out how. In 1993, he legally changed his name to “Luke Sissyfag” for two years before changing it back to Luke Montgomery. Personally, I wish he had retained the other name. It probably fits him perfectly.
I first heard about the following this morning on KOGO 600 AM radio in San Diego. Flights into and out of San Diego International Airport were halted for several hours today. This was because a man was shooting his gun inside an apartment complex, in the Bankers Hill section of San Diego, which is under the airport’s flight path. The flights were halted by the FAA as a precautionary measure.
Police responding to a domestic violence call heard gunshots at the complex shortly after 9:00 a.m. The shooter—Titus Colbert, 33—was sporadically shooting a high-powered rifle in different directions inside his girlfriend’s apartment, but he was contained inside the building.
Some of Colbert’s shots missed officers by inches. Fortunately, no one was hurt, and Colbert was taken into custody this afternoon.
This whole thing greatly disturbs me because it shows how one very irresponsible and self-absorbed person can shut down one of the nation’s busiest airports. I hope the proper steps are taken to prevent this guy from ever having a negative impact on society again.
SD International Airport is the one I fly out of and back into most frequently. At one point, I had planned a trip to Birmingham, AL, leaving October 21 and returning today, November 4. I changed my plans, though. However, if I had not, I probably would have been flown into a Los Angeles area airport because this completely unstable person could not control himself.
This morning, I went a little nuts buying 50%-off Halloween candy. I got almost 25 pounds of it, which definitely was the most candy I’ve ever purchased at once. It actually was 398.73 ounces, which is 24.92 pounds. Yikes!
It looks like I am a candy addict, but I’m really not. I mainly like chocolate and peanut butter combinations, but it will take me several months to eat most of that. A lot of the other stuff probably will be eaten by other people.
In other news, the Kansas City Royals are the World Series champions after beating the New York Mets tonight in game 5. The game lasted 12 innings.
The final score was Royals 7, Mets 2. The Royals had not won the World Series since 1985. Congratulations, Royals! Here are a few stats for the five games:
Tuesday, Oct. 27
Game 1 — New York at Kansas City
Wednesday, Oct. 28
Game 2 — New York at Kansas City
Friday, Oct. 30
Game 3 — Kansas City at New York
Saturday, Oct. 31
Game 4 —Kansas City at New York
Sunday, Nov. 1
Game 5 — Kansas City at New York
Halloween is an irrelevant day to me. The only good thing is that Halloween candy is on sale the next day, usually at half the price.
Most of the United States will “fall back” to Standard Time early tomorrow (Sunday) morning at 2:00 a.m. I like the following clock because it is accurate to the second, plus it can be adjusted to any time zone: http://time.gov/HTML5.
Except for Hawaii and Arizona, don’t forget to set your clocks back one hour before you go to bed tonight. If you are planning to attend church tomorrow morning, this means that you can get an extra hour of sleep.
Personally, I prefer Daylight Saving Time and wish it could continue year-round. I like it better when the sun rises later in the morning and sets later in the evening. But that’s just me.
Paul Ryan (R-WI) has been elected and sworn in as the 62nd Speaker of the House of Representatives. This follows the resignation, on Sep. 25, of John Boehner, who also will retire from Congress tomorrow, Oct. 30. The Speaker of the House is next in line, after the Vice President, to become President of the United States.
The World Health Organization (WHO) has announced that processed meats—such as bacon, sausages and ham—can cause cancer. Its report said that 50g of processed meat a day, which is less than two slices of bacon, increased the chance of developing colorectal cancer by 18%.
However, the WHO also said meat has health benefits. So these findings seem to indicate that it is good to cut down on red meat but not necessarily to give them up.
The first game of the 2015 World Series is was played tonight. This year’s series is being played between the New York Mets (National League champions) and the Kansas City Royals (American League champions).
Tonight’s game was the longest Game 1 in World Series history. It ran for 14 innings, and it lasted 5 hours and 9 minutes, ending at 1:16 am ET. The Royals won 4-3.
For the next several nights, the first pitch of each game will be at 8:07 pm ET. There will be as few as 4 games and as many as 7 games. If there is a fifth game, the first pitch will be at 8:15 pm ET. Here is the schedule, including the starting pitchers, if all 7 games are played:
Tuesday, Oct. 27
Game 1 — New York at Kansas City
Matt Harvey vs Edinson Volquez
Wednesday, Oct. 28
Game 2 — New York at Kansas City
Jacob deGrom vs. Johnny Cueto
Friday, Oct. 30
Game 3 — Kansas City at New York
Yordano Ventura vs. Noah Syndergaard
Saturday, Oct. 31
Game 4 —Kansas City at New York
Chris Young vs. Steven Matz
Sunday, Nov. 1*
Game 5 — Kansas City at New York
Edinson Volquez vs. Matt Harvey
Tuesday, Nov. 3*
Game 6 —New York at Kansas City
Jacob deGrom vs. Johnny Cueto
Wednesday, Nov 4*
Game 7 — New York at Kansas City
Noah Syndergaard vs. Yordano Ventura
* if necessary
Mets infielder Daniel Murphy is the National League Divisional Championship Series Most Valuable Player (MVP). He is the only player in major league baseball history to hit home runs in six consecutive playoff games.
One of these home runs was in game 5 of the National League Series. His home run, in the sixth inning, led the Mets to a 3-2 win over the L.A. Dodgers.
During a press conference on Saturday, Murphy was asked, jokingly, what planet he is from. His response was, “Earth...planet Earth...Jacksonville, Florida.”
Daniel Murphy is a Christian, and I liked his brief testimony on today’s 700 Club program. Below is a 3½-minute clip, from the 42:15 point to the 45:53 point. To view it, just start the video, find the 42:15 point with your arrow on the timeline at the bottom of the video, and click.
It seems that most Progressives feel that the fault of shootings in public places lies with guns. Therefore, more gun control will decrease the incidence of such shootings.
Actually, though, these killings cannot rightfully be blamed on guns and steel, the material out of which guns are made. Rather, the blame can be placed on the unstable and angry people who use them. Quite often, these are males that have had absent or weak fathers who have failed to interact with their sons and to teach them honor, good values and the difference between right and wrong.
Usually, I do not have the time to watch videos that people recommend to me. Sometimes I will view them if they are no longer than 10 minutes in length and are about a topic that interests me. This one falls into that category; it is under 7 minutes in length, and I agree with Bill Whittle’s message:
For the past two weeks on American Family Radio (AFR), Pastors Tom Wallace and Shahram Hadian of Fortress of Faith have presented a glossary of Islamic terms. There are numerous terms with which everyone should become familiar. The notes and audio recordings of these two programs are here:
Hurricane Patricia, the strongest hurricane ever recorded in the Western Hemisphere, has been spinning in the eastern Pacific Ocean today. It increased from a mere tropical storm to a category 5+ hurricane in less than 24 hours, which is the shortest time span ever measured for the increase in strength of any hurricane.
Patricia slammed into the west coast of Mexico, between Puerto Vallarta and Manzanillo, this evening. A category 5 hurricane has winds over 155 mph, and Patricia had winds of about 220 mph at its strongest.
Upon landfall, the hurricane’s sustained winds were 165 mph, which still is an intense category 5 storm. Strong winds and rain will cross over Mexico tonight and into Texas tomorrow. Many prayers need to be said for the safety of those in the path of this super-storm.
Here are storm systems and cloud covers over most of North America for a few hours today. Hurricane Patricia can be seen at the bottom/left of each image. Watching a 23-second slideshow is best. An updated North American weather map can be seen about halfway down my home page.
On Oct. 20, I noted that UNESCO was going to vote on a resolution the next day designating the Western Wall to be part of the Al-Aqsa Mosque. Fortunately, before the vote was taken yesterday, the resolution was revised to remove the Western Wall clause.
I actually expect this to cause an escalation in the violence of Palestinians on Jews in and around Jerusalem. Countless Muslims in that area have bought into the lie that Jews want to take over the Al-Aqsa Mosque and destroy it.
This is a deceptive fantasy, though, as Jews have no interest in harming the Al-Aqsa Mosque. However, Palestinian Muslims have been told this lie by radicals for so long that they believe it, and their delusional paranoia incites them to react violently.
What Jews do want is to live in peace and to be able to have free access to their holiest site, the Temple Mount, without being constantly assaulted and harassed by Muslims. A good 4½-minute summary about these things can be found in the 700 Club program below, from the 18:00 point to the 22:30 point, which was aired today.
I watched most of the entire program (50½ minutes) and found all of it to be interesting and informative. If you wish to watch only the 4½-minute segment about the Al-Aqsa Mosque, do the following:
Click on the video to start it.
Place your arrow on the timeline near the bottom of the video.
Move your arrow back and forth until you see a time that is a bit less than 18:00 minutes. You can use the timeline that I have placed below the video as a guide.
Click the timeline at that point and watch the 4½-minute segment from 18:00 to 22:30.
The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) will be voting on a resolution. The purpose of the resolution is to designate the Western Wall, located in the Old City of Jerusalem, to be part of the Al-Aqsa Mosque.
This vote will take place tomorrow. Personally, I rarely have heard of anything as ridiculous and appalling—not to mention, as anti-Semitic—as this.
The vote originally was scheduled to take place today. However, the chief of UNESCO, Irina Bokova, has postponed the vote until tomorrow. To her credit, Bokova has urged that the move to do this “could be seen to alter the status of the Old City of Jerusalem and its Walls and incite further tensions.” She is absolutely right about that.
Joseph was the eleventh son of Jacob/Israel. Joseph also was Jacob’s favorite son. The account of Joseph is one of my most favorite stories in the Bible (Genesis chapters 37 and 39-48). I personally am enraged that Palestinian terrorists have set fire to this shrine.
I see no immediate end to their violence and destruction. All means possible should be taken, by the Israeli Defence Forces (IDF), to push back against Palestinian militants and terrorists.
Numerous Israeli Jews have been killed this month by Palestinian assailants. Most of the violence has taken place in Jeruealem. It seems that the Palestinians may be pushing for a third intifada with Israel.
The Islamic New Year or Hijra begins tonight. It commences the month of Muharram, one of the four sacred months of the year. The Palestinian brutality against Israeli Jews can be expected to escalate during this Islamic holy month.
There is little doubt that much of the violence done by young Arab Islamic Palestinian men has been encouraged by Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas and the terrorist group Hamas. It is like pouring gasoline onto a fully-blazing inferno.
Not surprisingly, Abbas blamed Israel for all of the violence. He even accused Israel of “executing” a 13-year-old boy who carried out an attack in a Jerusalem neighborhood. He had stabbed a Jewish boy who was riding his bicycle.
In fact, though, the Palestinian boy had not been killed. After being shot by police—as he should have been—he had been taken to a hospital, where he is being well-cared for by a Jewish medical staff.
The following shocking video shows a Palestinian driving into a bus stop, where people are waiting for a bus. He then gets out of the car and attacks people with his machete before being shot by a responsible citizen. Warning: This video has graphic content.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has indicated that strong measures will be taken to put a stop to the unprovoked Palestinian violence. This will include Arab neighborhoods in East Jerusalem being surrounded by Israeli Defense Forces.
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry has said that he plans to travel to Israel soon and work to re-engage talks between the Israelis and the Palestinians. I feel that this endeavor is no more than an idealistic fantasy.
I do not believe that there will be any substantial, meaningful peace in Israel before the Messiah returns. Hopefully, that will be sooner rather than later.
The first debate of the Democratic presidential candidates took place this evening in Las Vegas, NV. The candidates who took part in the debate were Jim Webb, Bernie Sanders, Hillary Clinton, Martin O’Malley, and Lincoln Chafee.
The entire debate, lasting just under 2 hours, can be seen and heard here:
On American Family Radio (AFR) this morning, Pastors Tom Wallace and Shahram Hadian of Fortress of Faith discussed the evil man who performed the atrocious murders in Roseburg, OR, on Oct. 1. They also talked about how the unrighteousness and wickedness in America is likely to bring judgment upon this nation. The notes and audio recording of this program are here:
It was announced recently that massive oil reserves have been found in the Golan Heights, close to Israel’s border with Syria. Israeli officials believe this Golan Heights discovery could supply the Jewish State’s oil needs for centuries.
Israel captured the Golan Heights from Syria during the Six-Day War of 1967. In 1981, Israel effectively annexed this territory. However, the Golan Heights continues to be recognized, internationally, as Syrian territory.
Russia still is dropping bombs on rebels who are fighting against the Syrian government. No doubt the recent oil discovery, on land that previously belonged to Syria, has not escaped Russian eyes.
Many now fear that Russia might move into the Golan Heights in an attempt to claim the land, and the oil reserves, for Syria—or even try to exploit them for its own advantage. Essentially, if this occurred, it would be viewed by Israel as an invasion of its land, and it could be a huge game-changer in the Middle East.
The End of Life Option Act has been signed into law by Jerry Brown, Governor of California. It allows terminally ill patients to end their lives legally by swallowing lethal doses of physican-prescribed drugs. Following Oregon, Washington, Vermont, and Montana, California is now the fifth right-to-die state.
Commonly, the media and other news sources reports that the Palestinian people deserve to have their own nation or state, completely independent of Israel. It often is said that they are entitled to possess their land and that Israel has “occupied” it.
On Sep. 30, the Palestinian flag was even raised, for the first time ever, at the United Nations in New York. Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas continues to seek full membership for Palestine in the U.N.
In the three most recent shows, he has presented numerous reasons why there should be no Palestinian state, nor do the Palestinians have a right to land that belongs to Israel. Here are his last three programs, each one 26-27 minutes in length:
Somehow, in some way, a New World Order is coming and is inevitable. I have felt, for some time, there is a good chance that Sharia law will be part of it. Perhaps the Strong Cities Network is a step in that direction.
An increasing number of people are receiving new credit cards or debit cards with computer chips embedded into them. According to major card issuers, the chip offers added security against fraud. The liability shifts from card issuers to merchants who do not upgrade to this technology by today, Oct. 1, 2015.
These “smart cards” use a new technology called EMV, which stands for Europay, MasterCard and Visa. These are the three companies that created the standard for processing payments. These and other credit card companies claim that the chip will improve security and decrease fraud.
According to Matt Schulz, senior analyst at CreditCards.com, the microchip on a card makes it more difficult for fraudsters in two ways. Schulz says, “It makes it harder to physically counterfeit the card, and it creates a unique transaction code that’s passed to the merchant every time you make a purchase with the card. So that means the merchant will have a lot less of your usable data and instead will have this unique transaction code.”
The new cards with chips are not “swiped” like the old cards. Rather, they are “dipped” into a slot on the front of the credit card terminal. In some cases, purchasers may have to sign their names and/or enter a PIN (personal identification number) to complete the purchase.
There probably are many who feel that this credit card chip technology is merely one step on the way to biochips being implanted in people’s right hands or foreheads. That “mark of the beast” will be necessary for people to be able to buy or sell (Revelation 13:16-18). Time will tell if the credit card chip is a forefunner of this.